Norfolk’s d’Art Center: Fun for the Whole Family

Norfolk's d'Art Center Fun for the Whole Family - summer camps and classes

The d’Art Center in Downtown Norfolk is a must-see for families, artists, and tourists alike! This unique art center houses an array of stunning local and national artwork.

The d’Art Center also prides itself in holding multiple classes and camps for kids and adults. Or if you are looking to purchase art, you can snap up some from artists who work in the center. Read on to learn more about this space filled with a kaleidoscope of creativity, art, and community! 

New d’Art Center Location and Exhibits

The d’Art Center recently moved locations and now resides in the historic Atlantic Permanent Savings & Loan building. When you walk into the building, clean crisp white gallery walls display stunning art in a variety of mediums. Themed galleries are shown monthly, where art is sourced locally from Virginia and around the United States.

After you make your way through the front gallery, a large cogged-door that leads to a large walk-in vault is sure to catch your attention. A unique aspect of the new art center is that the building was previously a bank and still has the vault intact. The vault has since been converted into a small gallery, holding a mysterious charm and aura.  At the beginning of each month, the d’Art Center hosts the opening of a new themed exhibition. These reception showings are typically on the first or second Thursday of the month from 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM. Light refreshments and snacks are provided. All of the art entered into each monthly showing is judged and a winner selected by local art critics.

Art Camp at the d’Art Center

The d’Art Center offers Summer Camp for 6 weeks in June, July, and August. The first five weeks feature activities such as clay, mixed media, technology and digital art, and art on the move. Weekly themes include: Oceans, Travel the World, Pets & Animals, Animation, and Food & Flavors. Daily activities correspond with each theme and a different lesson plan that combines art with STEM! Students learn from professional art educators and d’Art’s on-site resident artists.

Throughout these weeks they work collaboratively, enjoy short field trips, and create unique art projects using a variety of media and techniques. The 6th week offers 5 specialty tracks for campers to choose from. Each week of camp is Monday- Friday, 8:30 am-3:00 pm. Parents may drop off their children using the NEW drive-through drop-off beginning at 8:00 am. In addition, an aftercare option from 3:00pm-6:00pm is also available!Sign up soon! Registration is still open for summer campThroughout these weeks, campers will work collaboratively, watch artist demonstrations, and create unique art projects using a variety of media and techniques culminating with campers’ very own Art Show on Fridays! Campers will also enjoy short field trips throughout the week: a tour of the new d’Art Center location in the Historic Atlantic Permanent Savings & Loan building and an overview of the gallery, the Chrysler Glass Studio, Chrysler Museum, and a walking tour of the NEON District and murals.

Classes and Workshops

If your child can’t make it to summer camp this summer, there are additional themed classes and workshops available throughout the year. Let your kid’s creative juices flow with attractions like paint dip classes, make your own teapots, paint your own tote, and much more!

These classes aren’t just for kids, they are perfect for a friend’s outing, or can make for a fun date night. If you have a certain project in mind you’d like to do as a family, the d’Art Center accommodates private sessions with any of our resident artists. This includes jewelry-making, ceramic lessons, paint pour, intarsia, cup paint dips, crochet, painting classes, and just about anything else you may have in mind!

Live Local Artists

Local artists rent out studio rooms in the back of the d’Art center where the public can see their work and actively purchase their art. It is neat to see each artist’s style and how they create. Some mediums they work in are glass, ceramics, paint, jewelry, and other mixed media. This live art aspect gives the center an interactive perspective you may not get in other museums or organizations. Furthermore, you can also shop for their artwork throughout the back of the facility.

More d’Art Center Information

The d’Art Centers new location is 740 Boush St, Norfolk, VA 23510. For reference, it is located within the NEON District of Norfolk, and a short drive or walk from the nearby Chrysler Museum. There is a parking lot in front of the building or street parking can be found around the d’Art Center. Entry is free, but you can choose to donate to support the arts. Classes and camps pricing varies per event, you can find the pricing on their website. If you have any other questions feel free to call the center at (757) 625-4211. And be sure to discover more Virginia Beach and Norfolk-themed guides and family-related articles on FamilyApp.

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